How does the trauma of the past affect us today?

Verbal DNA (@doblearcoiris) 8 years, 8 months ago

Oftentimes I like to wonder about ethereal connections we might have to events of the past.

Last night I spent several hours engrossed in reading about the Punic Wars between Rome and Carthage and upon finishing, I felt empty and solemn. How did I not know about this?

When Rome decided to destroy Carthage, the latter scrambled to prevent war. Rome made three demands, one after the other, all the while misleading the Carthaginians that each demand met meant they could keep their city.

1) Hand over 300 children.

They did. Mothers overwhelmed with grief, tearing out their hair en masse as their children were handed off to foreign invaders.

2) Hand over all the their weapons.

They did. All their swords, shields, spears, catapults, armor, anything they could have used to defend themselves.

3) Raze Carthage to the ground and move 10 miles inland.

Upon hearing this last demand, the Carthaginian delegates went into a fit of insanity, yelling and tearing off their clothes.

They went back to Carthage, a city of 300,000 people, and read the Roman demand to the senate. Outside, the entire city waited eagerly for the news. Apparently, all they heard were the yells of the senators as they realized what was going on.

The people yelled too and broke into the senate chamber. They killed the senators who made them give up their children and their weapons, tearing them to pieces in some instances.

Rome laid siege for 3 years and eventually made their way into the city, fighting viciously house to house for 7 days. Only 50,000 people left, as slaves, from the city. A whole people wiped out.

Now, here I am, over 2,000 years later, reading this account. I felt a strange sense of awareness come over me, as if I were directly linked to these people. I pitied the Carthaginians and felt hate towards the cruelty of the Romans, but even they were acting out of fear. Fear being the main propellant in the atrocities of most wars.

Such a tragic event on such an epic scale has cultural implications for us nowadays. If Rome did not defeat Carthage, we would not have out modern world, but I wonder if there is a psychological component. The mass suffering of a people 2,000 years ago, what effect does that have on the human species so many years and so many act of horror later, what effect does that have on a hypothetical collective consciousness?

January 25, 2014 at 1:32 pm
Anonymous (328) (@) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

“Who controls the past controls the future; who controls the present controls the past.”

How? Like you said, most people wouldn’t even know about it. We’re really not that different today. Sure we are advanced and more humanistic, but murders are now more of a sophisticated process. It happens everyday. People die emotionally, spiritually and psychologically. Yet we distract ourselves to think otherwise.

The Carthaginians we’re better off in my opinion. They didn’t agree. They could not take the injustice. A lesson of valor that we never get. Today, Important topics are obscured, fact are lies and we accept it. Good guys are often twisted to look as the bad guys and vice versa.

alex (21) (@rednax) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I cant answer your question, but think about how the shoah influenced the State of Israel and how they treat people now and how the germans do. the same catastrophe or “experience” created two different situations. how can there be a collective consciousness then?

MonkeyZazu (1,865)M (@monkeyzazu) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

That account of the carthaginians does make you feel a lot of sympathy towards them. As time passes, I would think those traumatic events would have less of an impact on us. Our emotional response isn’t as strong anymore do to the fact it happen centuries ago in a different era. Collectively, on a deeper level, events like this might still be affecting us today. I don’t know how though.

On a sidenote, it seems like they’re are post missing from this thread too.

Marlon (97) (@shoeopener) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

This is what I thought of when I read the title. I’m not even going to read anything else from this thread.

Anonymous (57) (@) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

Because the male penis grows an ego and then counteracts what should be the natural flow of things in an attempt to create a grander story for itself.
I remember crossing my arms, looking down at my crotch and giving a rather vocal “fucking really mate?” exasperation in it’s direction after that plateau of thinking was locked in.

In the case of Carthage, I would suggest the Rome would very well always have defeated Carthage, through simple cultural expansion and Carthage’s population slowly converting over the course of another few generations. Instead as I feel may well be the case universally, some DICKS got involved and wanted to hurry things along for the sake of what they thought would be their legacy.
Instead of what they must of THOUGHT we would think of them, we instead debate just how much psychological damage the madness of men before our time has caused us.

And still. People refuse to look inward and learn.
The march to balance is full of strife.
Find your peace.

Marlon (97) (@shoeopener) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

The male penis grows an ego. You stupid fuck. Learn about the words egotistic, egoistic, egocentric and egomaniac. Ego means you.

This retarded village is searching for the one village idiot.

Marlon (97) (@shoeopener) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

The male penis.


Ellie (1,363)M (@tangledupinplaid21) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

@shoeopener, stop insulting people or get banned.

Marlon (97) (@shoeopener) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I expected a positive reply but alright. I was wrong.

Anonymous (57) (@) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I don’t see the issue, Ego was the word I wanted.
No need to jump to hostility because you don’t understand my point of view.

I believe males get so blindly proud of having a penis that a separate sense of identity is formed, one that often takes control over our impulses.
Deal with it.

Marlon (97) (@shoeopener) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I don’t get blindly proud of having a penis. I have no idea what you’re saying. Why would you separate your identity with a penis identity? I don’t get it but it’s funny.

Anonymous (57) (@) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I do, it’s an impressive dick. I’ve been getting it on 5/6 times a week for the past 6 years, I at least was making unprofitable long term decisions based on an urge for sex. Because I felt sex was my identity with women, more so then my choice of words and actions.

If the Roman leadership wasn’t getting it on that much as well, I’d be amazed. So hence, if I can be blindly proud of my penis and feel it impacts my decision making ability in a grossly more selfish way, then I can argue that the leadership that decided on Carthage’s brutal fate was also under the same false influence.
So caught up trying to make legacies, ignorant of the damage that can be dealt.

Verbal DNA (74) (@doblearcoiris) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

Fear is the reason why they destroyed Carthage, because in the previous century some dude named Hannibal Barca terrified them for 16 years and they could not allow Carthage to regain a position in which they could do that again.

Having said that, acting out in fear is a consequence of ego. They surely did not care about what the future would think of them, in fact, Carthage told Rome that if they did what they did history would remember them for doing such a horrendous thing.

I’m sure a penis somewhere had something to do with this.

Eman (9) (@eman) 8 years, 8 months ago ago

I don’t have answers, but damn good question.

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